How to Meal Prep Like A Pro

Jan 5, 2023

How to meal prep like a pro

Kicking off a healthy eating plan feels a lot like trying to find your way through a maze, especially with the hustle and bustle of daily life, the lure of quick meals and trying to figure out what to eat in the first place. But here’s a secret weapon that can make it all a lot simpler: meal prepping.

It’s not just for fitness buffs or the ultra-organized—it’s a practical solution for anyone looking to eat better without spending hours in the kitchen every day.

Whether you’re totally new to the idea or you’ve been giving it a go and want to step up your game, we’ve got you covered. We’re all about making healthy eating easy, tasty and something you’ll actually look forward to.

Let’s get into how you can prep your meals like a pro, save time and still eat the kind of food that makes you feel great.

Hungry for more? Check out our cooking classes—from knife skills and pasta making to globally inspired eats, you’ll get hands-on guidance from our resident chefs, plus tips & tricks (and a delicious recipe) to take home.

Explore Our Cooking Classes

How to meal prep

What is meal prepping?

Meal prepping is the process of planning and preparing meals in advance. This can involve cooking complete meals that are ready to be reheated and eaten, or preparing and portioning out ingredients for recipes that will be cooked later.

The key idea behind meal prepping is to make healthy eating convenient and reduce the temptation to opt for less nutritious, quick-fix dining options when time is short.

How to meal prep

How to Meal Prep

Meal prepping might seem daunting at first, but it’s essentially about making your life easier and your meals healthier. Here are some simple steps to help get you started on your meal planning journey.

Plan your meals.

The first step in meal prepping is to plan your meals.

Decide what you want to eat for the week, considering breakfast, lunch, dinner and any snacks. Aim for a balanced diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, proteins and whole grains. Planning your meals can help ensure you get the necessary nutrients and avoid the monotony of eating the same thing every day.

Here are a few ideas for each of the main meals of the day:

  • Breakfast: They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and luckily, it’s an easy one to prep. Consider make-ahead breakfasts like smoothies, overnight oats and egg sandwiches.
  • Lunch: Lunch is a great meal to prep if you find yourself skipping it sometimes because your day gets too busy. Try rotating between hearty soups, seasonal salads and grain bowls.
  • Dinner: This can be the most daunting of the bunch, since you may be cooking for more than one person. Consider one-pan meals, stir-fries and veggie-packed pastas for easy and efficient meal options.


Shop smart.

Once you have a meal plan, create a shopping list of the ingredients you’ll need. Stick to your list to avoid impulse buys that may not fit into your meal plan.

Shopping smart also means choosing fresh and whole-food options whenever possible, as these are generally more nutritious than processed foods.

Pro Tip: Frozen fruits and veggies are a great resource! These items are frozen at peak ripeness, which helps them maintain not only their flavor, but also their nutrients. Utilizing frozen fruits and vegetables is also a great way to get access to produce that would otherwise be out of season.


Cook in batches.

The next step is to cook your meals in batches.

You can dedicate a few hours over the weekend to cook and prepare dishes that can be easily reheated throughout the week. You can also use your oven, stovetop and any other appliances you have to cook multiple items at once.

For example, while a tray of chicken breasts bakes in the oven, you could have rice cooking in one pot and veggies steaming in another.


Portion and store.

Once your meals are cooked, portion them out into individual containers. This step is crucial for portion control and ensuring you have meals ready to go when you need them.

Use clear containers to see what’s inside easily, and don’t forget to label them with the date.


Mix fresh and prepped.

Not everything has to be cooked in advance.

Fresh fruits and vegetables can be prepped but kept raw to maintain their crunch and nutritional value. Adding these to your meals throughout the week keeps things interesting and varied.

How to meal prep

14 Tips for Successful Meal Prepping

Meal prepping can streamline your week, save you money and keep your diet on track. Here are some tried-and-true tips to make your meal prepping journey both effective and enjoyable:

  1. Start small: If you’re new to meal prepping, start with just a few meals or snacks for the week. As you get more comfortable, you can gradually increase the number of meals you prep.
  2. Invest in quality containers: Good-quality containers are essential for storing your meals. Consider containers that are microwave safe and BPA-free for convenience or reusable silicone bags for eco-friendly alternatives to single-use plastic.
  3. Keep your pantry stocked: A well-stocked pantry is the backbone of efficient meal prepping. Keep essentials like grains, beans, lentils, spices and healthy oils on hand. These staples can form the base of countless meals and ensure you always have something nutritious to eat.
  4. Use time-saving tools and techniques: Make the most of kitchen gadgets like slow cookers and Instant Pots as well as food processors to cut down on prep time. Techniques like sheet pan cooking or one-pot meals can also simplify the cooking process and reduce cleanup.
  5. Consider a vacuum sealer: For meal prep that lasts longer and stays fresher, consider using a vacuum sealer. It’s great for extending the shelf life of your prepped meals, grains and proteins by removing air and preventing freezer burn. Vacuum-sealed food takes up less space, making it a smart choice for efficient storage.
  6. Schedule your prep time: Consistency is key. Choose a meal prep day that works for you—most people prefer the weekend—and block off a few hours specifically for this task. Making meal prep a regular part of your routine helps it become a habit.
  7. Keep it simple: You don’t need to prepare elaborate meals for meal prepping to be effective. Simple, wholesome meals are often easier to prepare and just as nutritious.
  8. Pick meal prep-friendly ingredients: When looking for recipes to prep, here are some ingredients you’ll want to keep an eye out for: grains (like quinoa, brown rice and pasta), roasted vegetables (like sweet potato, cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts), sturdy greens (like kale), protein (beans, eggs or animal protein) and healthy fats (like dressing or nuts). These ingredients often hold up well when stored for several days and can be part of a balanced diet.
  9. Switch it up: Avoid meal prep burnout by mixing up your menu each week. Try new recipes, experiment with different spices and rotate through a variety of proteins and vegetables. This not only keeps your diet interesting, but also ensures a broader intake of nutrients.
  10. Prep ingredients, not just meals: If you prefer flexibility, consider prepping ingredients instead of full meals. Chop vegetables, cook grains and prepare proteins to mix and match for quick assemblies during the week.
  11. Use themed meal prep days: Having a theme for each meal prep day (such as Meatless Monday, Taco Tuesday, etc.) can make planning more fun and give you something to look forward to each week.
  12. Hydrate creatively: Prepping isn’t just for solid foods. You can also prep infused waters, herbal teas, or even broth to ensure you’re staying hydrated throughout the week in a flavorful way.
  13. Optimize your workspace: Before you start prepping, clean and organize your kitchen space. Having a clear workspace and all your tools and ingredients ready can make the meal prep process smoother and faster.
  14. Make it enjoyable: Listen to music, podcasts or audiobooks while you prep to make the process more enjoyable. Meal prepping can be a meditative and creative activity that contributes to your overall well-being.


Hungry for more? Check out our cooking classes—from knife skills and pasta making to globally inspired eats, you’ll get hands-on guidance from our resident chefs, plus tips & tricks (and a delicious recipe) to take home.

Explore Our Cooking Classes

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